Peps Persson


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With Rotblos Peps Persson returned to what made him famous, Swedish translations of blues standards. Not that he ever stopped playing them, or including one or two on his more reggae-based albums, but after Blues På Svenska, it took 22 years until he released another blues album. But even on this pure Chicago album there are hints of Peps Persson's love for African music. One is in the guitar figures on "Främlingsblues," a cover of Elmore James' "Stranger Blues," that gives the song a good momentum. As usual, the band is extremely competent, and the dialect and the humour of the translated texts add a new dimension to the often chauvinistic Chicago blues lyrics, like in "Go'maren Lilla Skoltös" and Sonny Boy Williamson's "Good Morning Little Schoolgirl," a song you seem to be allowed to sing no matter your age. Peps Persson was awarded with a Swedish Grammy for Best Lyrics for Rotblos, not a common thing when it comes to translations. And blues have not often been played better in Sweden, but still, after the novelty of the translations has worn off, you may get a vague unsatisfactory feeling. It may be so that playing old songs in an old fashioned manner, no matter how good, can never really compete with the best the present has to offer. This is not only a cover album, but neither is it far enough from being. But that is the only thing that keeps this album from getting an absolute top rating.

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